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Maryland Court of Special Appeals

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The Maryland Court of Special Appeals is the intermediate appellate court in Maryland. The Court of Special Appeals was created in 1966 in response to the rapidly growing caseload in the Maryland Court of Appeals. Like the state's highest court, the tribunal meets in the Robert C. Murphy Courts of Appeal Building in the state capital, Annapolis.

The Maryland Court of Special Appeals originally could hear only criminal cases. However, its jurisdiction has expanded so that it now considers any reviewable judgment, decree, order, or other action of the circuit and orphans’ courts, unless otherwise provided by law. Judges sitting on the Court of Special Appeals generally hear and decide cases in panels of three. In some instances, however, all 13 judges may listen to a case, known as an en banc hearing.

Maryland Court of Special Appeals
Court information
Judges:   13
Founded:   1966
Salary:   $154,000[1]
Judicial selection
Method:   Commission-selection, political appointment with Senate confirmation
Term:   10 years


JudgeTermAppointed by
Chief judge Peter Krauser2000-2020Gov. Parris N. Glendening
Judge Deborah S. Eyler1997-2018Gov. Parris N. Glendening
Judge Timothy Meredith2004-2016Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr.
Judge Patrick Woodward2005-2016Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr.
Judge Robert Zarnoch2008-2018Gov. Martin O'Malley
Judge Alexander Wright2008-2020Gov. Martin O'Malley
Judge Kathryn Graeff2008-2020Gov. Martin O'Malley
Judge Christopher Kehoe2009-2020Gov. Martin O'Malley
Judge Michele D. Hotten2010-2022Gov. Martin O'Malley
Judge Stuart R. Berger2011-2022Gov. Martin O'Malley
Judge Michael Wilson Reed2014-2024Gov. Martin O'Malley
Judge Andrea M. Leahy-Fucheck2014-2024Gov. Martin O'Malley
Judge Dan Friedman2014-2016Gov. Martin O'Malley
Judge Kevin Francis Arthur2014-2024Gov. Martin O'Malley
Judge Douglas R. M. Nazarian2013-2024Gov. Martin O'Malley

Appointment and qualifications

The thirteen judges of the Court of Special Appeals are appointed by the Governor of Maryland with Maryland State Senate consent. They serve ten-year terms.

The judges of the court are required to be citizens of and qualified voters in Maryland. Prior to their appointment, they must have resided in Maryland for at least five years, and for at least six months in the appellate judicial circuit from which they are appointed. They must be at least thirty years of age at the time of appointment, and must have been admitted to practice law in Maryland. Appointees should be "most distinguished for integrity, wisdom and sound legal knowledge."

After initial appointment by the Governor and confirmation by the Senate, members of the court, at the first general election occurring at least one year after the position was vacated, run for continuance in office on their records without opposition. If the voters reject the retention in office of a judge, or the vote is tied, the office becomes vacant. Otherwise, the incumbent judge is retained in office for a ten-year term. This requirement of voter approval is similar to provisions in the Missouri Plan, a non-partisan method for selecting judges which is used by 11 states.[2]

There are six at-large judges and one judge from each of the state's seven Appellate Judicial Circuits; the latter are required to be a resident of his or her respective circuit. The circuits are currently as follows:

External links


Portions of this article have been taken from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Copyright Notice can be found here.

MarylandMaryland Court of AppealsMaryland Court of Special AppealsMaryland District CourtsMaryland Circuit CourtsMaryland Orphans' CourtUnited States District Court for the District of MarylandUnited States bankruptcy court, District of MarylandUnited States Court of Appeals for the Fourth CircuitMaryland countiesMaryland judicial newsMaryland judicial electionsJudicial selection in MarylandMarylandTemplate.jpg


JudgeElection Vote
ReedMichael Wilson Reed 87.8% ApprovedA
NazarianDouglas R. M. Nazarian 79.3% ApprovedA
JudgeElection Vote
Leahy-FucheckAndrea M. Leahy-Fucheck 85.8% ApprovedA
ArthurKevin Francis Arthur 84.8% ApprovedA


CandidateIncumbencyPositionPrimary VoteElection Vote
HottenMichele D. Hotten   ApprovedAYes4th Appellate Circuit   ApprovedA
WattsShirley Marie Watts   ApprovedAYes   ApprovedA
BergerStuart R. Berger   ApprovedAYesAt-large   ApprovedA